Police arrest protesters Monday at Yale University, one of several schools where students are rallying against Israel's handling of its war in Gaza.
New Haven, Connecticut CNN  — 

The arrests of dozens of pro-Palestinian, pro-divestment activists at Yale University didn’t deter protesters from uniting for another demonstration Tuesday.

Yale University police arrested 45 protesters Monday and charged them with criminal trespassing after they refused orders to leave, said police in New Haven, Connecticut. The day before, a group of 14 Yale students ended an eight-day hunger strike to put pressure on the university to divest its funds from companies that profit from Israel’s war with Gaza.

Miguel Monteiro, a 34-year-old third-year PhD student at Yale who participated in the hunger strike, said their method of protest was a “progressive escalation” after being “met with silence” by the university since October in petitions, letters, rallies, walkouts and disrupting school events.

About a dozen protesters remained Tuesday morning – some with sleeping bags in front of the school’s library. But Beinecke Plaza – the scene of Monday’s arrests – was closed and under police guard.

The rally echoed a spate of pro-Palestinian demonstrations unfolding across other college campuses.

Tensions have escalated at many US universities since the October 7 terror attack on Israel by Hamas, in which about 1,200 people were killed, and Israel’s subsequent war on Hamas in Gaza, which has since killed tens of thousands of Palestinian civilians, according to the enclave’s health ministry.

Live updates: The latest on protests at Columbia and other universities

About 45 people at Yale “refused to leave” and were charged with criminal trespass, a misdemeanor, before they were transported to a Yale police facility where they were processed and then released, New Haven police said in a statement.

A protester is arrested at Yale University on Monday. Police said those arrested face misdemeanor charges of criminal trespassing.

Following that wave of arrests, a group of about 200 protesters returned to block an intersection, New Haven police said late Monday morning.

At about 5 p.m., protesters were told to leave as police were ready to call the gathering an unlawful assembly. Protest organizers asked the group to disperse, and most returned to campus to continue their demonstration. The road was reopened, and CNN did not witness anyone being taken into custody.

Yale University’s police department had “issued summonses to 47 students” after repeated requests to leave Hewitt Quadrangle, where protesters “advocating for Yale’s divestment from military weapons manufacturers converged,” the school said.

“Students who were arrested also will be referred for Yale disciplinary action, which includes a range of sanctions, such as reprimand, probation, or suspension,” the university said.

Protesters at Yale had been warned twice before the arrests – once at 11 p.m. Sunday and again before 7 a.m. Monday, the university’s police chief told the Yale Daily News.

Journalists from the publication were also threatened with arrest if they did not move from the plaza, the independent campus newspaper said.

Despite the warnings from police, many protesters refused to leave. Some locked arms around a flagpole and sang, “We Shall Not Be Moved” as officers began arrests, according to footage provided to CNN by Yale graduate and independent journalist Thomas Birmingham.

Students end 8-day hunger strike

The students who went on hunger strike lost up to 16 pounds and an average of 8% of their body weight, suffering low-blood sugar levels, exhaustion, migraines, loss of sleep due to body aches and difficulty focusing and speaking, organizers for the group of students, Hunger Strikers for Palestine, told CNN on Tuesday.

The group wrote a letter to Yale President Peter Salovey on April 10 informing him they would go on hunger strike unless the university committed to divesting from weapons manufacturers contributing to Israel’s war in Gaza by April 12 and to discussing plans for divestment in an April 20 board of trustees meeting.

“We will risk our bodily health and wellbeing, in ways that mirror only a fraction of the absolute devastation that Palestinians are suffering right now… Yale’s complicity in genocide must end,” the letter read.

The coalition, which included 12 graduate students and two undergraduate students, began their hunger strike on April 13. Throughout the strike, the students had a volunteer health team checking their vitals and providing medical assistance, organizers told CNN.

Yale acknowledged the hunger strike in an April 14 news release that said staff members “will continue to emphasize the importance of student health and well-being during this time” and encouraged hunger strikers “to consult with clinicians at Yale Health.”

On April 17, Yale announced its Advisory Committee on Investor Responsibility concluded “military weapons manufacturing for authorized sales did not meet the threshold of grave social injury, a prerequisite for divestment, because this manufacturing supports socially necessary uses, such as law enforcement and national security.”

The committee did say it would expand Yale’s policy on assault weapons divestment “to cover assault weapons manufacturers that engage in retail activities to the general public.”

Monteiro, the third-year graduate student, described a variety of health problems throughout the eight-day strike, including feeling dizzy and having trouble focusing, and said the group wanted to also spotlight the plight of starving Palestinians in Gaza.

“We were losing lots of weight, and then at the same time we’re looking at the news and seeing what’s happening and how what little bit of suffering we’re going through is basically nothing compared with what’s going on in Gaza with the manmade famine being imposed,” he said.

Columbia protests lead to hybrid classes

About 75 miles away in New York, Columbia University said it will have hybrid classes through the end of the semester as protests spur safety concerns.

Columbia has been the site of multiple protests denouncing Israel’s handling of its war in Gaza. On Monday, classes were held virtually ahead of Passover, a major Jewish holiday that began Monday evening.

“Safety is our highest priority as we strive to support our students’ learning and all the required academic operations,” Columbia University said in a statement Monday night.

Organizers of the student protests at Columbia said their demonstrations have been peaceful and distanced themselves from non-student protesters who have gathered outside the campus, calling them “inflammatory individuals who do not represent us.”

This story has been updated with additional information.

CNN’s Caroll Alvarado, Sarah Dewberry and Elizabeth Wolfe contributed to this report.